Vyshonne Janusas Finalist Gino Fracas Football Award.
Varsity Ravens Finalist Team of the Year
Glen Mills Finalist Coach of the Year
Glen Mills Finalist Executive of the Year
The WESPYS are Tuesday March 10, 2020
Alec D’Angela is a Windsor native graduating from Holy Names high school and a former Essex ravens football player. His dedication and hard work earned him a Division II NCAA football and academic scholarship to Tiffin University in Ohio. This transition, while challenging, was also rewarding. After just one year he became the youngest individual in school history to be named a Team Captain. A title he maintained for three years until he suffered a season ending knee injury. Knowledge of the game was enhanced under the coaching staff at Tiffin University. His defensive coordinator is now coach for the Tennessee Titans. Football was not the only accolade achieved. Alec earned the Dean’s list credential’s every semester. In May 2019 Alec graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration with majors in both accounting and finance. Alec is currently a financial analyst at Vistaprint. Alec is excited and eager to rejoin the flock but this time as a coach. Players can expect that Alec will be dedicated coach helping players reach their highest potential.
Another dominating performance by the defence paved the way for the Essex Ravens to claim the team’s first Ontario Provincial Football League title.
Essex’s defence held the Ottawa Sooners’ offence to two field goals as the Ravens secured a 25-6 win in Saturday’s premier varsity championship game at TD Waterhouse Stadium in London.
“We’ve been playing with the same core of group of guys for long time,” Ravens linebacker Zack Argent said. “I always felt we had potential and this year we just all put it together. We were all like brothers. We had such a bond.”
After a season-opening loss in London to the two-time league champion Junior Mustangs, the Ravens reeled of 10-straight wins en route to the title.
“I just think there was a focus and commitment to winning a championship,” Ravens’ head coach Glen Mills said. “They were incredibly focused on what needed to be done and they never complained. They just came to practice, worked and got it done.”
Ottawa used an early turnover to take a 3-0 lead, but the Ravens pulled even at halftime on a 32-yard field goal by Griffen Fenton.
“I think it was nerves,” Ravens wide receiver Vyshonne Janusas said of the team’s early struggles on offence. “We got the first half out of the way, calmed down and realized it’s just another game and shouldn’t look at it any differently than any other game.”
Essex took its first possession of the second half to the end zone with Dante Daniels pulling in a 13-yard slat from Emmitt Rosati for a touchdown that Fenton converted to put the Ravens up 10-3.
“I was telling everyone, at halftime ‘Hey, I have faith in our offence and they’re going to turn it on, score again and trust me, we’re going to win,’” said the 18-year-old Argent, who is headed to the University of Windsor. “They’re not going to score on our defence. We have faith in them and they have faith in us.”
Ottawa did use another turnover to pull to within 10-6 after three quarters, but got not closer.
“Our defence really stepped up,” the 18-year-old Janusas said. “It means a lot for me because I haven’t had a championship in football in six years. I didn’t win one in high school (at Herman). No matter what sport play or where you are, winning is a confidence booster and humbles you and make you want to work. It was a blast.”
Tai Colquhoun scored on a seven-yard run and Aiden Mitrevski scored on a one-yard run with Fenton converting both and adding a single to close the scoring as Essex claimed its fifth title in franchise history and first since 2015.
“It means a lot,” Argent said. “I’ve been in a couple of championships. I’ve been playing since Grade 6 or 7 and been to a couple and lost. This might be my last year and it’s great to finish on high note.
“Usually the underdog is a preferred role, but I really feel this team was different. We had a sense of confidence, but not cockiness. We knew what we were capable of.”
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